Further Education in Italy
School leavers in Italy have a choice of many further educational opportunities, including business and commercial colleges, language schools, catering colleges, universities and further education courses for school-leavers, graduates, unemployed and workers. They include many levels of courses covering everything from doctorates, masters and diplomas. These types of courses / further education may be three years or longer, or vocational courses which are normally shorter.
Corsi di formazione professionale is the term used for vocational courses, and the aim is to promote learning through a combination of theory and practical training. These types of courses are aimed at school leavers who have not managed to attain the relevant qualifications or for those students who have attained the primary qualifications and wish to be educated to the next level. Many of these courses are also targeted at the working man and those who are unemployed, so that they are able to get re-qualified in a trade or industry and look for different types of employment.
As in many countries, in Italy there are more students than course places, and to qualify for a place there may be admission examinations. Courses for diploma students vary from four hundred to twelve hundred hours of tuition, depending of the nature of the course, and perhaps outside placements within industry.
Some areas have free courses for students depending on their circumstances. Normally these types of opportunities are in deprived areas, areas of high unemployment, or rural areas where the government wants to educate workers in areas like farming etc. Also, there are groups that the government focus on to help such as, the disabled, students who have failed in their schooling, graduates looking for work, and the unemployed. Local and regional government offices will post details of such opportunities, and many vocational training offices throughout Italy will help such groups find education. Also, a good area for finding such courses is in the particular industry you wish to work for, in trade union offices, and websites. Great information can also be obtained from the regional offices of the Centro di Informazione e Orientamento.
Italy has a good number of institutions that can offer international types of courses and qualifications. For example St John’s University in Rome offers an American MBA degree and other American designed courses. The Bocconi University of Milan also has American syllabuses and corresponding courses.
The syllabuses range from business administration, banking, economics, communications, marketing and public relations. To attend these courses, you must pay high tuition fees, and the coursework and attendance is strictly monitored, most courses are held in English. The European University Institute in Florence also offers many further education courses in English. There are popular postgraduate courses and many research type opportunities especially in social sciences. To gain admission to these courses is all based on qualifications and merit, any qualified student from the EU can apply as long as they have a first in a degree.
Italy has a wealth of further education for both school leavers and for older students who want to either change their occupation or become qualified at a higher level in specialist areas.